Make His Praise Glorious! (Psalm 66)


To the Chief Musician. A Song. A Psalm. Make a joyful shout to God, all the earth! 2 Sing out the honor of His name; Make His praise glorious. 3 Say to God, “How awesome are Your works! Through the greatness of Your power Your enemies shall submit themselves to You. 4 All the earth shall worship You And sing praises to You; They shall sing praises [to] Your name.” Selah

PSALM 66:1-4


What is your standard of worship? Are you phoning it in? I’m not just talking about Sundays either. I mean what kind of worship do you offer God throughout the week? Is it all out? Is it full of life, joy, and celebration or is it barely there, if there at all?

Sometimes in life we are tempted to put off things. We’ll say something like, “I’ll get to that tomorrow.” or we’ll satisfy ourselves with less than our best effort. We may say something like, “That will have to do.” We do just enough to skate by. We do just enough to check the box that says present, but we didn’t really learn anything from class that day because while our body was there, our mind was somewhere else.

Sometimes we do have to put something off or put in less than our best. Hopefully in each of those scenarios whatever fell short on was worth the sacrifice. Maybe we put off a chore for the sake of sleep because we came in tired from a long day.

But the one place we don’t need to cut any corners on is the praise of God. Because He is so worth it. Indeed one of the things we miss the most when we fail to praise God is we lose sense of His weightiness (and our relationship to Him). When we worship casually, distracted, or as an afterthought we tend to miss the big picture on who God is (and who we are). Our day, our week, our month, our year becomes all about us instead of His Kingdom come, and will be done.

The Psalmist reminds us today at the beginning of this psalm that we are to make His praise glorious! He is worthy of our best effort. He is worthy of a little more time. He is worthy of digging in past our skeptical attitude and finding the joy that He brings to our lives. If we really want to be honest with ourselves, we need it too! We were created to worship God and when our private and corporate worship flounder it’s a good indication that we are broken.

So I challenge you to make His praise Glorious. There are practical ways to do this. We can plan for corporate worship to help us be fully present. We can make sure our schedules allow us enough time to sleep so we will be refreshed on Sundays. We can lay out clothes the night before so we aren’t rushed to get there. We can meditate on the songs we sing and scripture that is read. We can discuss the sermon. We can come prepared to give and give sacrificially. We can offer our humble voices in the singing of the congregation or choir. We can amen the points of sound doctrine that the pastor offers from the pulpit. We can share with others what the Lord has done in our life that week. We can be prepared to fellowship with others and have them to our house (hospitality) or meet them somewhere.

Privately we can read his word. We can pray. We can work as unto the Lord. We can sing songs. We can seek to share about God’s goodness with others. We can use the gifts he has given us. We can simply recount the things we saw God do each day in our lives.


Father, Thank you for your word today. You are truly worthy of great praise and worship from me for all you have done. Though my body is often tired and my mind is prone to wonder, I pray that I save the best of me for worshipping you! You have done mighty things in my life. Your hand has been on mye from even an early age. You have been my sure foundation. You have guided my steps. Everytime the enemy thought to destroy me, you preserved me. I have been sick, but you have made me well. I have been sad, but you have restored my joy, I have been tired, but you have given me strength! You indeed are worthy or worship! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

I’m reading and blogging the Psalms Through The Summer. I’d love for you to join me. You can find out a little more here.

God Bless Us… Let The Nations Be Glad (Psalm 67)


To the Chief Musician. On stringed instruments. A Psalm. A Song. God be merciful to us and bless us, [And] cause His face to shine upon us, Selah 2 That Your way may be known on earth, Your salvation among all nations. 3 Let the peoples praise You, O God; Let all the peoples praise You. 4 Oh, let the nations be glad and sing for joy! For You shall judge the people righteously, And govern the nations on earth. Selah 5 Let the peoples praise You, O God; Let all the peoples praise You. 6 [Then] the earth shall yield her increase; God, our own God, shall bless us. 7 God shall bless us, And all the ends of the earth shall fear Him.

PSALM 67:1-7


I took my daughter to a splash pad the other day. She had the time of her life getting soaked in cool, fresh water on a hot day. She kept begging me to come and play. There was more than enough water and she wanted me to join in the fun. Her joy would be multiplied by my participation in the artificial precipitation!

While we were there I couldn’t help but notice one particular feature of the splash pad. There were two cone shaped buckets suspended in the air being filled with water. The axis by which they were attached was just off center so when the bucket filled it spilled out on to everyone bellow. I couldn’t help but think of how God blesses us and our blessings flow to bless others as well.

God blesses us to be a blessing! The Old Testament nation of Israel had a peculiar promise and mission from God. It was through them (via the covenant God made with Abraham) that all the nations of the world would be blessed (Genesis 12). They were blessed, but the blessing wouldn’t be just for them, it was for all the nations. There would be excess blessing (this is how God blesses!) And in watching the overflow of blessing in others, they would be even more blessed!

When God blesses us, it isn’t just for our enjoyment, it’s also for the joy and blessing of others. The overflow of our cup not only blesses others but it increases our joy and celebration as we see God’s blessing continue to cascade to others! This should provoke us to prayer and praise as the Psalmist does here… “God bless us… let the nations be glad!”

There are some who have taken a pause at saying things like, “God Bless America.” I don’t know where the pause comes? Truly you should pray that God would bless your country (regardless of your nationality) and others would be blessed by it. Indeed its from the overflow of God’s blessing on Israel, that we are blessed! In that, we all have something to sing about!


Father, Thank you for grace upon grace poured out in blessing upon your people! Thank you for the blessings that have been poured out in my life. I rejoice to see how you have blessed my by the overflow of blessing on others and that you have used me as a vessel of your blessing to others! I rejoice in your goodness and celebrate your sovereignty today! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

I’m reading and blogging the Psalms Through The Summer. I’d love for you to join me. You can find out a little more here.

How The Wicked Miss The Joy of The LORD (Psalm 36)


1 To the Chief Musician. [A Psalm] of David the servant of the LORD. An oracle within my heart concerning the transgression of the wicked: [There is] no fear of God before his eyes. 2 For he flatters himself in his own eyes, When he finds out his iniquity [and] when he hates. 3 The words of his mouth [are] wickedness and deceit; He has ceased to be wise [and] to do good. 4 He devises wickedness on his bed; He sets himself in a way [that is] not good; He does not abhor evil. 5 Your mercy, O LORD, [is] in the heavens; Your faithfulness [reaches] to the clouds. 6 Your righteousness [is] like the great mountains; Your judgments [are] a great deep; O LORD, You preserve man and beast. 7 How precious [is] Your lovingkindness, O God! Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of Your wings. 8 They are abundantly satisfied with the fullness of Your house, And You give them drink from the river of Your pleasures. 9 For with You [is] the fountain of life; In Your light we see light. 10 Oh, continue Your lovingkindness to those who know You, And Your righteousness to the upright in heart. 11 Let not the foot of pride come against me, And let not the hand of the wicked drive me away. 12 There the workers of iniquity have fallen; They have been cast down and are not able to rise.

PSALM 36:1-12


Sometimes it seems like the bad guys are getting ahead. It seems like they have more money, possessions, power, privilege, charisma, stuff…. you know, the things that this world uses to figure out who is ahead. Some days it seems like they have it all. Some days it even seems like they have it all together. But they are missing one very important thing. If they don’t know the LORD, they are missing out on grace, love, kindness, goodness, blessing, and a whole lot more that comes with the LORD.

David is reflecting on the wicked who have set their heart against God. They may seem like they have a lot going for them, but they are missing the biggest blessing they could ever have. They may seem like they have it all together, but if they don’t have the LORD, it’s all going to fall apart. The wicked may have fun for a moment, but only the LORD can provide real and lasting Joy.

David then rightly goes into meditating on the character of God and everything the wicked are missing out on. The will never know what it’s like to have their sins forgiven. They will never know that free grace and mercy of God because they have hardened their hearts against him. They will never know what it is like to be loved by someone who never gives up on you,,,, They will never know.

And that should give us pause, especially on days when we are prone to want to be like them in some way. We don’t really want to be like them, if being like them means we don’t know God’s love and mercy. We don’t really want to dabble with the dark stuff if it means abandoning truth and grace. We don’t really want to pursue what they are pursing if it means we don’t get the LORD in the mix.

Knowing God is way better than anything the wicked could ever offer. Indeed what makes them wicked, is their failure to see the value of knowing God. The wicked are missing out on the joy of abundant life now and eternal life forever.


Father, I confess sometimes my heart is tempted to want the things of this world so much so that I would admire those who have all the things this world offers, but they don’t have you. Help me to see their severe poverty. Help me to know that what they hold on to is temporary and fleeting. Help me not to miss the riches of your grace and mercy. Help me to be grateful for the extreme kindness that has been shown to me in you. Help me note that they don’t have the one thing that matters. You O’ Lord are worthy of all my praise and affection. Thank you for the deep well of your mercy and grace. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

I’m reading and blogging the Psalms Through The Summer. I’d love for you to join me. You can find out a little more here.

From Problems To Praise (Psalm 31)


For you are my rock and my fortress; and for your name’s sake you lead me and guide me; you take me out of the net they have hidden for me, for you are my refuge. Into your hand I commit my spirit; you have redeemed me, O LORD, faithful God.
(Psalm 31:3-5)


We find pieces of this Psalm in the mouths of other bible characters as they go through suffering. Jonah quotes from from it, Jeremiah, another Psalmist in Psalm 73, and of course Jesus utters, “Into your hand I commit my spirit.” This Psalm has well worn traction for those who are facing affliction. It’s a place to go to in the time of need. It carries a beautiful balance of honest reflections on the problems of life and our peculiar circumstances, a reminder of God’s incredible character, and response of trust in the LORD.

I conducted a funeral for a friend a few weeks ago who reminded me of this psalm. She would call me up and everything would seem like an emergency. She had a small flair for the dramatic. But indeed the issues were real and so we would discuss the challenges she was facing. Somewhere in the midst of our conversation she would remember how God had provided for her in the past. The conversation would flow into a time of testimony. Finally she would land on the fact that we all knew from the beginning, God was in control and she trusted him.

It’s good to bring our problems to God! Where else can we take them? In the midst of our problems though, we should remember the character of God. Sometimes we are tempted to look at God’s character through out circumstance. We think, “Oh, He doesn’t love me? Why did he let this happen? How will I ever get through this?” When we should be looking at our circumstances through God’s character, “I don’t know why this happened, but I know that the Lord has never let me down before. I may not see it, but he has a plan. I certainly don’t understand what is going on, but the Lord does.”

David begins with his problems, takes them to the Lord and ends the Psalm with praise of who God is. In doing so, he demonstrates how we might pray and praise the Lord in the midst of our own afflictions.


Father, Thank you for your grace and everything that is new in my life each morning. Thank you for your amazing faithfulness. Thank you that you delight to hear the prayers of your servants. Thank you that we can call on you in our distress. Thank you that you hear us. As we pray though our difficulties I ask that we would be reminded of your goodness and character. I ask that as we lift our burdens to you we would trust you. Thank you for this tried and true psalm that helps us pray in our afflictions. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

I’m reading and blogging the Psalms Through The Summer. I’d love for you to join me. You can find out a little more here.

Like A Shepherd Lead Us (Psalm 23)


A Psalm of David. The LORD [is] my shepherd; I shall not want. 2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. 3 He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake. 4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You [are] with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. 6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the LORD Forever.

PSALM 23:1-6, NKJV


My family and I have a trail that we like to go hike from time to time. It’s a familiar trail to us now and we’ve named some of the landmarks along the way. There is the mosquito forest, hidden ox bow lake, the hunter’s glen, and “poo-poo beach” (which got it’s name when my then 4 year old son really had to use the restroom and did only to discover that there was a port-a-potty 50 yards through the woods). These familiar landmarks make the hike memorable. Each land mark, like “poo-poo beach” has a meaningful memory tied to it.

Psalm 23 is very familiar to me. It’s probably the most familiar Psalm I know. My youngest child and I quote it to each other almost every night. Because this Psalm is a well worn path in my reading/ reciting it has several key features that jump out to me as I meditate on it today. There are several places in this passage that I have grown intimately familiar with due to life circumstances. As we follow the shepherd through the eyes of a sheep going through familiar territory, I can’t help but see how the Lord has been there for me in the landmarks of my life as well.

The Lord has lead me through green pastures. He has lead me to quiet waters of refreshment. He has been there for me in the valley of the shadow of death, both as I mourned others and faced my own mortality with threatening health issues. I’ve sensed his goodness and mercy running after me.

My favorite part of this Psalm these days is where he prepares a table before me in the presence of my enemies. I am comforted knowing that the enemies that scare me, don’t scare God. He has given me peace in what would otherwise be volatile situations. I am grateful for reading and meditating on this Psalm today.


Father, Like a Shepherd lead us. You know our needs, wants, and desires. You know what is good for us. You know what situations we are in. You know the path we should go. You are gentle in the way you lead, you protect and comfort us. You bless us even in adversity. You chase us down with blessing. You give us more than we could ever want or need. You are good to us. Like a Shepherd lead us. Let us like sheep follow you. Let me trust you in the good times and in the scary. Let me look to you to provide what I need, to know what I need, to protect me when I am in danger, to comfort me when I am scared and to lead me in the way everlasting. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

I’m reading and blogging the Psalms Through The Summer. I’d love for you to join me. You can find out a little more here.

I Will Praise The Lord With My Whole Heart (Psalm 9)


1 To the Chief Musician. To [the tune of] “Death of the Son.” A Psalm of David. I will praise [You], O LORD, with my whole heart; I will tell of all Your marvelous works. 2 I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.

PSALM 9:1-2


A few years ago I was very sick. I didn’t know what was fully going on. I would start projects but was too sick to finish. I would be wiped out by two or three in the afternoon. I was fatigued and had a fever every day for over 100 days. I’d had chest pains and been to the ER several times. I went to doctors, we ran tests, and eventually it was discovered that I had a condition with my heart that would require surgery. I know what it is like to have a sick heart that isn’t acting in full capacity.

David says that he will praise God with his whole heart. While David isn’t talking about his physical heart, he is referencing that his praise come from all of who he is and from the place that wills. Often times someone will say that their “heart” isn’t in it. That doesn’t mean that their organ stops beating, but rather that they weren’t fully committed, they showed up and may have been physically present, but their will wasn’t fully in it.  David says that his is fully committed to praise God. He isn’t divided. He isn’t riding the fence. He isn’t hot one minute and cold the next. He is all in on praising God and he tells us How his whole heart is in it!

David is going into worship with an attitude of gladness and rejoicing. He can’t help but get that way when he tells of all of God’s works (This is good medicine for those who are downcast). David is committed to singing God’s praise. He extols God’s attributes, especially God’s goodness, justice, and strength. He takes his refuge/ shelter in the Lord and pleads his cause looking to the Lord for Justice!

Sometimes I confess that I get off center. I don’t approach the LORD the way I should, with my whole heart. I want to hold some part back. Sometimes I need a check up and I need to get the medicine of God’s word to remind me of who He is and what He does. Sometimes I need the Holy Spirit to operate on me and diagnose my condition. I want to always praise God with my whole heart.


Father, thank you for saving my life in the midst of physical heart issues. I am forever grateful of your grace and I am grateful for the good health I experience today. I ask for my spiritual heart today. Don’t let me approach you in a cold or indifferent way, I always want to be all in with you! As I recount my testimony, I am grateful for your presence in my life all along the way. If there is anything holding me back from worshipping you with my whole heart, I pray that you would address it. In Jesus name, Amen.

I’m reading and blogging the Psalms Through The Summer. I’d love for you to join me. You can find out a little more here.

On the Instrument of Gath (Psalm 8)


1 To the Chief Musician. On the instrument of Gath. A Psalm of David. O LORD, our Lord, How excellent [is] Your name in all the earth, Who have set Your glory above the heavens! 2 Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have ordained strength, Because of Your enemies, That You may silence the enemy and the avenger. 3 When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, The moon and the stars, which You have ordained, 4 What is man that You are mindful of him, And the son of man that You visit him? 5 For You have made him a little lower than the angels, And You have crowned him with glory and honor. 6 You have made him to have dominion over the works of Your hands; You have put all [things] under his feet, 7 All sheep and oxen–Even the beasts of the field, 8 The birds of the air, And the fish of the sea That pass through the paths of the seas. 9 O LORD, our Lord, How excellent [is] Your name in all the earth!

PSALM 8:1-9


The address to the Chief Musician reminds us that this isn’t just a private musing of David, but one that he thinks is fit for others to join in as well. It bares David’s name, because he is the author, but these words that have given voice to his awe and wonder of God are suitable for others to use as well. Praise God for musicians who have the skill in penning notes, thoughts, words and have given us expression to praise God! There is no higher vehicle for music to transform us than when we sing praise to God. 

On the instrument of Gath. We remember that Gath was a Philistine Territory in the days of David. It was where Goliath was from. A little coastal village along a creek bank. What kind usefulness could come from Gath? Apparently there was an instrument there that the Hebrew folks took over and used in worship to the LORD!

Wasn’t the Lord worthy of Praise even from this instrument formed by Philistine hands? The Philistines may not have recognized the LORD, but He had made them just the same. He knit them together. He marked off their dwelling. He gave the spark to their creativity. He formed their human ears. He set forth the arithmetic of melody. Surely this instrument had been used for lesser worship of lesser god’s who were at best just stone and at worst demons. Now in the hands of a skilled Israelite musician this instrument would reach forth to it’s fullest potential and be redeemed for use in praising the one true God, the creator of heaven and earth.

I didn’t start out as a Christian. I came to a place where I put my hope and trust in Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. There have been a lot of words that I have uttered that were not praise worthy, nor did they extol the grace and mercy of God. Yet, God in his grace and providence has called me to be an instrument in his hands for his praise and glory. I am grateful for this small line in this wonderful psalms that reminds me today that God redeems.

Come, Thou Fount of every blessing,
  Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
  Call for songs of loudest praise.

Robert Robinson in the Hymn, “COME THOU FOUNT OF EVERY BLESSING”


Father, You are worthy of all praise, honor, and glory! The details of your creation amaze me. From Astronomy to Oceanography our lives brim with testimony of design. From the smallest of cells the the most complex of eco systems the world testifies to your goodness. Thank you for letting me join in the chorus of your praise. I am grateful that you are a God who redeems. In Jesus Christ, Name, Amen.

I’m reading and blogging the Psalms Through The Summer. I’d love for you to join me. You can find out a little more here.

Day 90: Revelation 19-22 (NEW TESTAMENT 90)

Today’s reading comes from Revelation 19-22 follow the link provided here to read the ESV online.

I find it interesting that the near the beginning of the bible we see a marriage (Adam and Eve in Genesis 2), Jesus begins his public ministry with a wedding (by attending the wedding in Canna in John 2), and now we find one near the end of the bible (Revelation 19). The marriage relationship points us to God’s design like no other earthly relationship that we may have.  Each wedding is a look back to the first wedding there in the garden and a look forward to the marriage supper of the Lamb. 

In these final chapters we see a great separation of mankind. On the one hand, we have those who are welcomed into the new Jerusalem, eternal life, etc. But on the other hand there will be those who never trust in the Lord and they will cast into the lake of fire. God’s judgement is always fair.

In Revelation 21:3 we see what makes heaven, heaven, God will dwell with his people once again. This was what was lost at the fall. This is what was demonstrated with the tabernacle in the wilderness and later the temple in Jerusalem. This is what is demonstrated in Christ. This is the promise received by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. We will never be far from the LORD. The mountains are brought low, the valleys are raised up. The sea is clear. The light is the LORD himself.

One final thought. The gates to the city are made of pearl. Pearls are the only precious stone made by an organic creature. A little sand cause irritation in a clam and the clam covers it and covers it until it is no longer and irritation, but has become something valuable. When we cross through the pearly gates we will remember a life marred by sin, but redeemed by Jesus. Our brokenness will ultimately be covered over and fixed by the righteousness of Jesus Christ.

FATHER, Thank you for the grace of studying your word. Thank you for the opportunity to read the new testament together for the last 90 days. I ask that you would give us wisdom for the generation and moment that we live in. I pray that we would make the must use of our time for your kingdom and your glory. We look forward to the return of Christ and when all things are truly made new. Thank you for the grace of leading your people. IN JESUS NAME, AMEN.


What did you take away from today’s reading? What are your thoughts or questions? Feel free to comment below and enter the discussion.

Find out about New Testament 90 – Here


Day 89: Revelation 16-18 (NEW TESTAMENT 90)

Today’s reading comes from Revelation 16-18 follow the link provided here to read the ESV online.

The reading today is filled with a lot of imagery that many others have attempted to interpret so I won’t add anything there. What I’d like to notice is the wrath of God, especially as it concerns the persecution of the saints. God cannot be loving without being wrathful. Those two attributes go together. Indeed, because God is loving that He is wrathful. God loves the martyrs so he avenges them by pouring out his wrath. Notice that God’s wrath isn’t like ours. He makes no mistakes in judgement. It isn’t undeserved, if anything God has been patient with mankind by not pouring out his wrath sooner.

Notice also how this wrath serves to harden the hearts of those who hate God. They continue to curse him and blaspheme rather than repent and come to God on his terms. The fact that the wrath comes in waves serves to demonstrate that there is time and opportunity for repentance, but people continue to harden their heart. They would rather shake their finite fist at the Creator than repent of sin and turn to Him…. They are broken beyond repair. They will not turn from their sin.

I think this passage should cause a real sobriety among God’s people. We should recognize that God is in control, he will bring justice in his own time and at the exact right time. We should be quick to repent knowing that God offers all sorts of opportunities along the way to seek repentance. We should also be scared to ever harden our heart against God.

FATHER, I pray that we have tender hearts today. I ask that we would be ready to receive your word. We stand in awe of your greatness and your sovereignty. We are thankful for your patience and we rejoice in your justice. We pray that we would always be quick to repent when we find ourselves in sin. Thank you for the grace of leading your flock. IN JESUS NAME, AMEN.

What did you take away from today’s reading? What are your thoughts or questions? Feel free to comment below and enter the discussion.

Find out about New Testament 90 – Here


Day 86: Revelation 7-9 (NEW TESTAMENT 90)

Today’s reading comes from Revelation 7-9 follow the link provided here to read the ESV online.

In chapter seven there is a great multitude from every tongue, tribe, and nation. Studying Genesis helps us understand a lot of the book of Revelation. The representatives of the nations that were caused by disobedience and the resulting division at Babel (Gen. 11) are coming together as martyrs in the tribulation. We are beginning to see every effect of sin become undone. I think we also can see a hint of this in Acts 2 on the day of Pentecost where the Holy Spirit enables the Apostles to preach in different languages.

Revelation 7:16-17 speaks of Jesus’ provision for the martyrs and is reminiscent of the 23rd Psalm. What a joy it is to continue to see the scriptures play out across the generations. Much of what we see in the seventh chapter with white robes, living water, he shall dwell with them, etc. we will see play our later in the book of revelation as well.

Despite all that we see playing out in the book of Revelation, there will be many who continue to harden their heart against the LORD. It can be a difficult thing to imagine that there would be so many who would continue to rebel against God and refuse to repent. We will continue to see this theme all the way up until the end in the book of Revelation.

FATHER, Thank you for the shed blood of JESUS which makes it possible to approach you and enter into the paradise you have prepared for your people. Thank you for the martyrs of all generations and those who will arise out of the tribulation as a witness for you. I pray that our witness for you is bold in our generation and pleases you. I ask for your gospel to go forth with clarity and power. Thank you for the privilege of leading your people. IN JESUS NAME, AMEN.

What did you take away from today’s reading? What are your thoughts or questions? Feel free to comment below and enter the discussion.

Find out about New Testament 90 – Here